The Hub Crawl: a Boston-based Urban Photo Scavenger Hunt

hub crawl complete rules

participation requirements

  • Participants must acknowledge the physical demands of the event.
    The event requires going around town (and possibly at a brisk pace) for a period of three hours. Sites visited will mainly be located outdoors but may involve locations that may not be wheelchair-accessible. If you are not comfortable nor capable of doing the aforementioned, this may not be the activity for you. An event waiver must be signed by the complete team before they are allowed to participate.

  • Participants should be 18 or older.
    The Hub Crawl Ninja Staff can not guarantee that the event will be a kid-friendly event and advise those who invite their children to participate to do so at their own peril.

team rules

  • Teams must have at least one smart phone.
    In order to perform photo-captures and serve as a means for the Hub Crawl Ninja Staff to communicate game updates to participants, each team must have at least one smart phone with an active voice, data and text plan in their possession. Photo-captures can, of course, be performed with other devices (digital cameras and camera phones) but must be done in addition to the requisite smart phone. Analog cameras are not allowed as photographs must be available for review during tallying at the close of the event.

  • Teams are made up of 4 members.
    As the event is designed for teams of 4, bringing an oversized or undersized team to The Hub Crawl is strongly discouraged. That said, teams can be no smaller than 3 and no larger than 5. Those team sizes observe different scoring rules (see below). Moreover, teams of 5 are only permissible if: 1) a special request for an oversized team is made before the day of the event and is approved by the Hub Crawl Ninja Staff or 2) there are no undersized teams at the time of the event. In the case of condition 2, teams of 5 will be asked to surrender a member to otherwise complete an understaffed team before being allowed to play as an oversized team.

  • Each team must have a captain.
    To keep things simple, this person will be designated the team's singular point of contact. Only the captain can request Hints and it is this person who is required to attend the Huddle at the start of the event. Whether or not this person has any actual power is up to the team.

  • Each team must have a name.
    If you do not provide a name for your team, you will be assigned one. This name will be randomly generated and/or not be flattering. Consider yourselves warned. Ninja Staff reserve the right to reject certain team names if deemed offensive or inappropriate. Silly or random names, however, are a-okay.

photo-capture rules

  • Only photos taken at the time of the event with the devices brought by team members will get scored.
  • Captures will only be scored once and duplicates will be ignored (teams must indicate which photo to submit for scoring).
  • The subject(s) of each photo must be clearly and easily identifiable to be scored. If the identity of the subject is in any way questionable, their inclusion can not be scored. This may invalidate a capture either partially or entirely.
  • Only those photo-captures taken in the zones that they are listed under will be scored.
  • Interpretations of photo-capture list items are not allowed. These items were included on The List because they do exist.
  • Unless indicated specifically, photos of photos or photos of illustrations in place of a properly captured list item will be ignored. Come on.

basic scoring rules

  • Standard Photo-Capture
    : : 100 points
  • Challenge Photo-Capture
    : : 200 points
  • Token Photo-Capture
    : : 300 points
  • Final Photo-Capture
    : : 500 points


  • Member Bonus
    +25 points for each Team Member included in a photo-capture (awarded per capture).

  • Completist Bonus
    +100 points for a zone that has all its Standard and Challenge photo-captures completed (awarded per qualified locale). Token captures do not figure into the awarding of this bonus.

  • Traveler Bonus
    +100 points for getting at least one photo-capture (Standard or Challenge) in each zone (awarded once only). Token captures do not figure into the awarding of this bonus.

  • Opportunist Bonus
    +250 points for getting every photo-capture in the entire Anywhere section (awarded once only).


  • Late Penalty
    -100 points per minute that an entire team is not at the Rally Point at the conclusion of the event. After 30 minutes has transpired since the close of the scavenger hunt portion, entire teams that have not yet checked back in are disqualified.


  • In the unlikely event of a tie, the team with the fewest number of Hints requested wins.
  • If the above does not resolve the tie, the team with the most photos that include their entire team wins the tie.
  • If the above still does not resolve the tie, then the two teams must play rock-paper-scissors (best 2 out of 3 wins).

additional rules

  • Hints
    Should a Token Puzzle prove to be too difficult to solve without assistance, Hints can be requested from the Hub Crawl Ninja Staff by Team Captains. Though Hints no longer incur a point penalty, Teams are limited to just 2 Hints, each. If a team participates in coordinated costumes, they are awarded an additional Hint (for a total of 3 Hints).

  • Scoring 3-Person Teams
    For every photo-capture with a Team Member in it, they score as if there were one more person in the shot. If there were no Team Members present in the shot, they do not get this adjustment.

  • Scoring 5-Person Teams
    For every photo-capture with a Team Member in it, teams of 5 score as if there were one less person in the shot.

  • Participants caught cheating or misbehaving will have their teams disqualified.
    Any actions committed by a participant that go against the spirit of the game experience or rules as they have been set out will lead to the disqualification of their entire team whether or not other members took part in nor had knowledge of the incident. This extends to the sabotaging of another team's performance, mistreating members of another team or being a problem for the event staff or the general public.

  • Sponsors can participate... sorta.
    Participants from companies or patrons currently sponsoring the event or are related to current sponsors in any way can take part in the event. However, to keep things fair and devoid of potentially compromised gameplay, doing so means their scores are not competitive. Though they can still earn points as a measure of their performance, their numbers will not be included when determining the official ranking/places of all the teams at the close of the event. Said teams can not be awarded prizes.

  • Photos of you
    By registering your team to participate in this event, you agree that your likeness and the likenesses of all the members of your team can be used for promotional purposes unless Ninja Staff is explicity told otherwise.

super secret sub-game

  • Sometimes, there will be another smaller puzzle game hidden within the body of the Hub Crawl.
  • The Secret Subgame will be comprised of a small set of challenging puzzles accessible via smartphone and is designed to add value to the Hub Crawl and is not in itself meant to be competitive.
  • Participation is optional as it does not affect a team's progress in the context of the larger game event.
  • No information will be given as it relates to this stealth game prior to and during the Hub Crawl (Ninja Staff will feign ignorance until tallying and scoring occur).
  • All instructions are provided within the vehicle of the subgame and, as such, no assistance will be provided by Ninja Staff (including Hints or clarifications).
  • Prizes as they relate to this subgame are awarded for participation and completion.

newbie guide

Veteran crawler Kirk Israel has drawn up a cartoony guide, simplifying the rules and presenting them with cute monsters. Check it out!

some helpful tips

Want some tips from crawlers and ninja staff? Here ya go. Or have some tips of your own? Then email us.

rules to go

Download a copy of the complete event rules as a PDF.

sponsor a crawl!

Are you a patron or company interested in sponsoring the Hub Crawl? Let us know and you can help us make this next event our best one yet!

Check out all our Sponsor Ninja!

keep up with the crawl

twitter google+ facebook yelp
flickr tumblr rss